Old Town Association

Becky McCray, flickr Creative Commons

The first in a series of public safety improvements in Old Town were announced this morning.

Improvements include the implementation of an identification scanner system called Bar Shield that will track patrons who show a pattern of public misconduct. The system uses an iPhone app to scan government-issued IDs as patrons enter the establishment. Anyone who causes a problem can be flagged. The system also identifies fake IDs.

Jason Van Sickle with the Old Town Association says the owners of all of the bars in the area have agreed to purchase and use the technology.

Becky McCray, flickr Creative Commons

The City of Wichita has announced a plan to help keep the Old Town entertainment district safe at night and on weekends.

The Wichita Police Department says violent crime in Old Town has decreased since 2012, but city officials say work still needs to be done. Mayor Jeff Longwell debuted recommendations for keeping the area safe.

“Some of the changes we’re making that we think will help provide a little bit better environment for everyone down there is allowing the hiring of off-duty officers,” Longwell says.

Becky McCray, flickr Creative Commons

The Wichita Police Department is working with bar owners in the city’s Old Town entertainment district to help prevent violent crime.

A report from the City of Wichita shows crime in Old Town hit its peak in 2012, with more than 550 incidents reported. Now, it’s nearly a third of that.

But Wichita Police Chief Gordon Ramsay says a shooting earlier this month, which injured four people outside of the Pandora Night Club on Mead Street, shows that efforts to keep Old Town safe aren’t over.

Ramsay has met with bar owners in the area.

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